A REMINDER RE CIVIL DISCOURSE AND A QUESTION

"Civil discourse has been described as "the language of dispassionate objectivity", and suggests that it requires respect of the other participants, such as the reader. It neither diminishes the other's moral worth, nor questions their good judgment; it avoids hostility, direct antagonism, or excessive persuasion; it requires modesty and an appreciation for the other participant's experiences." 

----Wikipedia

Does social media give us license to discard or abandon rules of engagement within the context of civil discourse as defined and described here?

Views: 124

Comment by Ron Powell on January 24, 2019 at 9:52pm

Please begin your response with a simple "yes" or "no". Thanks...

Comment by koshersalaami on January 24, 2019 at 10:17pm

I’m afraid so. I wish it didn’t and there are times I’ve attempted to gear conversations that way, but I’ve run across opinions and insane offensive inaccuracies that make civility pretty close to impossible. 

Comment by Robert B. James on January 24, 2019 at 10:45pm

Yes. As in public space. Free speech is as it rolls, not as we want to read, or hear it. Man, I’ve heard some stuff, and tossed some right back too. The easily offended might avoid public space, just as cowards shout stuff out the window driving by. I’ve been unfriended for defending people who were being attacked that were not following the thread to do so themselves. 

I consider the source...in public and on social media, and respond as I see fit. I’m not easily offended or afraid of a challenge. Take President Drone’s tweets for example; I find them extremely offensive, but I consider the source and am glad to have the stream of evidence to support my long standing opinion of him. Would he say those things to my face with out me getting up in his? No way. 

There are times for dispassionate objectivity, and then there are moments when you just say exactly what you feel, in public and on social media. Anyone who knows your base line would understand...and of course there is pardon for lapses, and an apology or some sort of gesture needed.  

Getting over it, and back to the process of communication is far more important than civil discourse. Any communication is better than no communication. We all need to be heard, and we all need to be responded to. 

Comment by Robert B. James on January 24, 2019 at 10:57pm

I was jogging in 2016 over the creek and a car full of young men drove up behind me, and one leaned out the window and called me a nigger. I was near sixty, and lo and behold there they were...stuck at the light with their window still down. 

Civil discourse?  Teachable moment? Consider the source? 

Comment by Tom Cordle on January 25, 2019 at 12:06am

No, it doesn't give us license, but whether on the Net or elsewhere, people don't need a license to behave badly. What the Net offers is anonymity, and with that some behave worse than they would otherwise. On the hand, some people behave badly regardless of where they are. That's especially true of those who don't have much worth saying.

Comment by Dicky Neely on January 25, 2019 at 9:39am

No, there is no excuse for mean and nasty, unfounded attacks. You have a "right" to say what you want, as the old saw goes "I may disagree with every word you say but I will defend to the death your right to say it!"

But, having said that, by engaging in un-civil discourse you certainly diminish your argument. 

Comment by Ron Powell on January 25, 2019 at 9:55am

The count thus far is:

2 yes

2 no

Comment by Anna Herrington on January 25, 2019 at 10:03am

No -- license isn't given but it certainly is taken. Civil discourse is a silent agreement to be decent in speaking truths as I see it but has also been used by those who use it to keep abuses under wrap over time, so there can be a perceived diminishing of the validity of civil discourse...

...meant to be used as a way of fostering societies running smoothly and differences between humans from descending into chaos and verbal rancor, mud slinging, violence even - but when all parties aren't in agreement to it, or are oppressed by it rather than given equal voice, it certainly can break down, and maybe should at certain times. Who hasn't lost it, at some point and another, when speaking with civil discourse is entirely ignored and you're in pain or your people are in pain and/or you're desperate to have your voice heard?

However, back to social media, it seems to have descended into chronic attacks and shitting on another just because, too often. When it's a choice, it's far too easy when 'invisible' behind a screen to choose no self restraint.

(Especially if one is drunk at midnight or whenever, I keep thinking... not here so much these days as some threads I've seen at different platforms...)

Comment by Ron Powell on January 25, 2019 at 10:10am

@Dicky;  Evelyn Beatrice Hall (28 September 1868 – 13 April 1956), who wrote under the pseudonym S. G. Tallentyre, was an English writer best known for her biography of Voltaire entitled The Life of Voltaire, first published in 1903. She also wrote The Friends of Voltaire, which she completed in 1906.

In The Friends of Voltaire, Hall wrote the phrase: "I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it" (which is often misattributed to Voltaire himself) as an illustration of Voltaire's beliefs. Hall's quotation is often cited to describe the principle of freedom of speech. ------Wikipedia

 

Comment by Ron Powell on January 25, 2019 at 10:16am

@Anna; "......meant to be used as a way of fostering societies running smoothly and differences between humans from descending into chaos and verbal rancor, mud slinging, violence even - but when all parties aren't in agreement to it, or are oppressed by it rather than given equal voice, it certainly can break down, and maybe should at certain times."

Very well stated...

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